Chapter 30 Big Competition of the Five Academies
Throughout these three days, other than attending to his basic bodily functions or for his meals and fluid intake, Ding Hao remained in his room to practice his swordsmanship.
He had already been living here for more than four years, and he had achieved a very thorough understanding of everything about the Swordsmanship-seeking Sect after merging his memories with the past. There was no more need for him to waste any more time on this aspect.
The goal for him now was to make use of all available time to practice and increase his personal strength.
The first room turned out to be the best room in the huge yard as expected. As a whole, it was divided into the front hall and back chamber. The front hall was spacious and well-lit; it was most well suited for training. The back chamber was a little more narrow, and there was only a desk and bed made of green stone in it. Obviously, it was to be his resting area.
To Ding Hao, every minute and every second was extremely precious.
He needed to put in all his effort to increase his strength so that he could quickly reach the stage whereby he was capable enough of walking in the wilderness. Only then, could he travel far away to the Southern Land to search for his younger sister.
This was the last promise he had made to the soul belonging to the previous owner of his current body.
He had to achieve his goal.
Of course, being extremely competitive, he had long ago swore secretly that one day he would climb up to the top of the nominal roll and trample all over those geniuses with demon-like strength.
“Bam, bam, bam!”
The sound of someone knocking on his door came from the outside.
Ding Hao kept his sword and stood upright, slowly letting out a mouthful of foul breath. He then opened to door and found Zhang Fan standing outside.
“Senior brother Ding, just now, instructor Wang Juefeng of our academy sent someone with a message for us. He needs us to gather at the dojo at the Eastern Academy of green shirts in a moment. He said something like the big competition between the five academies—East, South, West, North, and Central, would be held after two days, and that he would like to pick our representatives beforehand. Ive come over to keep you informed,” said the teenage hunter with a sincere smile on his face. “I didnt disrupt your training, did I”
Ding Hao smiled as he replied, “No, you didnt. Well be fellow disciples from now on, so you dont have to address me so courteously. You can call me Ding Hao.”
After he finished speaking, he went into his room to change into the green colored long robe issued by the sect and secured the rusty sword to his waist before stepping out again.
Both of them talked as they walked out of the 8th yard.
They walked along the path made of green stone slabs in the forest. Along their way, they met up with a number of similarly dressed disciples of the Eastern Academy. All of them wore excited expressions on their faces as they grouped together in twos and threes, walking toward the dojo far away from the parade square.
These were the disciples of the Eastern Academy of green shirts.
Other than the mysterious exceptional geniuses ranked the first 20 positions, who were directly ushered into the inner sanctum of the sect for secret training, the other 2,000 disciples of the Swordsmanship-seeking sect were divided into five big academies—the Eastern Academy of green shirts, Southern Academy of purple shirts, Western Academy of red shirts, Northern Academy of yellow shirts, and Central Academy of white shirts.
There were exactly 400 disciples in each academy, and they were differentiated from each other by the color of their robes.
Not only did disciples of different academies live in different areas, but even their advancement in the realm of martial arts were also taken care of by different instructors. All of them had to undergo a one-year rookie training period.
What was worth mentioning was that the 2,000 rookies could only be considered as disciples on the waiting list.
It meant that if any of them were eliminated in the test one year ago, he or she would lose the right to remain in the Swordsmanship-seeking Sect and be expelled from the sect.
In reality, there were countless tests in the Swordsmanship-seeking Sect. There was a minor test every month, a fairly important one every season and also a major one every year. The tests came in many types and forms, and it gave the disciples suffocating pressure.
The Swordsmanship-seeking Sect was a school that thought very highly of competition.
The process of sorting the disciples into five academies was one method of creating an area of competition.
Every month, there would be a huge competition amongst the five academies. Each academy would select 10 finest representatives to compete in martial arts.
Winning these contests of martial skill carried huge importance.
The final rankings would determine the disciples belonging to which academy would receive the biggest amounts of effective medicine, manuals to mystical arts and other various benefits before the next competition—that is, before the next month. The disciples that belonged to the academy that achieved the highest ranking could even receive more guidance from the experts of the sect during their daily training.
These resources and advantages were things that made the rookies eye each other.
No matter which academy any teenager belonged to, he or she did not want to lose out because of a bad start.
After 10 minutes, both Ding Hao and Zhang Fan arrived at the great hall of the dojo in the parade square of the Eastern Academy.
There were already two to three hundred people within the vast great hall. All of them wore the fitted green shirts of a warrior and sat on stone seats at the four corners of the ring in the center of the hall. They kept whispering to each other, discussing the candidate selection test for the upcoming competition. All of them looked excited and were eager to try their hands.
Wang Xiaoqi, the teenager clad in purple, who was living with both Ding Hao and Zhang Fan in the 8th yard, was also in the crowd.
He had also changed into a green shirt, and was chatting warmly with a group of teenagers.
“The hook-nosed youth Wang Xiaoqi and the others are crowding around is known as Zhuo Yifeng. It is said that hes ranked 107th, pretty close to the top tier of disciples of the Eastern Academy. Hes always presented himself as extremely arrogant, and during these few days, hes won over a substantial amount of disciples from the Eastern Academy. Hes bent on becoming the leader of the Eastern Academy of green shirts.”
Zhang Fan whispered softly to Ding Hao.
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The teenage hunter seemed to have caught on to quite a substantial amount of information.
Both of them unhurriedly found empty seats to sit down on and wait for the selection process to begin.
It was at this moment when Ding Hao noticed that there was someone standing quietly at the center of the green stone ring situated in the middle of the stone hall of the dojo.
It was a burly, muscular man with sideburns dressed in a long green robe.
The muscular man had an aura that made Ding Hao feel that he was extremely dangerous as if he was a fierce beast quietly lying in wait as he stood in the ring. There was a scary power hidden within his muscular body, and once it was unleashed, he could rip all of the teenagers in the dojo to shreds within 15 minutes.
Ding Hao tried to make comparisons secretly and had already determined that he was no match for the well-built man.
At the same time, the burly man with sideburns seemed to have felt Ding Haos gaze on him and looked over.
Their eyes met and Ding Hao felt that the burly mans gaze was as sharp as a knife. It was so sharp that it made Ding Hao squint involuntarily. His pupils hurt and ached, and he was secretly surprised as well.
A strange curve appeared on the burly mans lips as he stared at Ding Hao.
After a few seconds, he retracted his gaze and turned to look at the entire great hall. He nodded slightly before lightly grunting.
It was not too loud or soft, but rang clearly beside everyones ear.
Instantly, everyone felt as though his or her eardrums had been viciously struck. The youngsters amongst the crowd that had weaker foundations or were weaker involuntarily turned pale and started to wobble.
Everyone stopped their discussions and looked in surprise at the muscular man.
The great hall of the dojo had turned so quiet that even the sound of a pin dropping could be heard clearly.